Yakubu Wuyep, Jos
The Emir of Wase, Alhaji Mohammed Haruna Sambo has appealed to Federal Government to take decisive steps against those causing conflicts around Wase Local Government (LGA).
Addressing women protesters at the Wase LGA Guest House, Caretaker chairman of the Wase LGA, Haruna Abdul Zakare who spoke through the councilor for Education, Umar Jibrin, said the conflicts in Wase were being inflicted by people from outside as all tribes around Wase dwelled together peacefully, calling on all authorities to close ranks and restore lasting peace to the community.
The crisis which was introduced by leaders of Wase emirate council in 1998 over control of government activities to humiliate some natives of the council needs the intervention of the Emir.
Attempts to get Special Task Force (STF) to speak on the Wase incident failed as a text message and calls to the force’s spokesman, Capt Ihedichi Iweha, had not been answered at the time of filing this report yesterday.
What women intended as a peace rally to awaken the consciousness of Nigerian and the global community to the conflicts which have troubled Wase over the past decade, turned violent in the southern Plateau town yesterday when men of the Special Task Force (STF) stationed in the town lashed out at the women and school children that formed the stream of the rally, thereby preventing the advance of the procession to their scheduled last point of call, the Wase Divisional Police Headquarters.
The participants of the rally which was organized by Wase Women Development Association (WAWODA) had headed to the STF base from the nearby Wase LGA Guest House when the soldiers rose and flogged the women who got within their reach, creating tension in the ancient town.
“We told them we were holding this peace rally and the sector commander assured us of our safety, we can’t understand why they should do this,” interim coordinator of WAWODA, Hajia Safiya Adamu said in a press interview following the incident,” adding, “We can’t continue this peace rally now because we don’t know what these people mean. This is the kind of treatment we get from these men who are deployed to protect us.”
Five school children and a woman were injured, some directly from the cane the soldiers used and some from a fall in the course of a stampede from the soldiers; an irony of a rally in which women held placards complaining that conflicts had made them widows and children projecting their own placards grieving that they had been orphaned and their education imperiled.